What you’re missing in downtown Troy

Grace Sgambettera
Creative Editor

PHOTO BY Grace Sgambettera

As we continue to try to stay both warm and entertained inside during February, are you getting bored with your usual haunts?

Despite being located just minutes from the heart of downtown Troy, Hudson Valley students might be missing out on much of what the little city has to offer even in the winter months.

Here’s what you’re missing in downtown Troy:
K-Plate

Formerly found in Troy Kitchen on Congress Street, this Korean street food could be HVCC’s next food staple.

Located at 75 4th St. in the middle of downtown Troy, K Plate offers a simple menu of Korean BBQ plates, dumplings, wings, and even Kimchi fries.

It’s hard to go wrong with the original “K-Plate” which comes with succulent marinated beef sirloin over rice, lettuce and pickled radish. For those looking for a little more spice in their lives, there’s the “Hot-Plate” with spicy marinated beef sirloin, and your choice of hot sauce, mild sauce, or sriracha mayo.

The restaurant itself has lots of small tables should customers choose to dine in, but they seem to be more specifically set up for takeout orders. Even the dine-in option comes in a disposable container you could just as easily walk out with.

Still, the price can hardly be beaten. The most expensive plate on the menu only sets you back about $8 and portion sizes are generous.

Ace Hardware

An unexpected addition to any list of “must visits,” the Ace Hardware of Troy is so much more than your average hardware store.

The independently owned store located at 63 3rd St. in Troy boasts a carefully curated section of trendy home goods. Ace of Troy’s Instagram worthy offerings are far from being just that, they support many women artists and makers locally and across the United States.

There are multiple shelves with mugs that say “Death before Decaf,” books about bartending and minimalism, candles, fancy hand lotion and even whisky tumblers that say “sauced” on them in fancy calligraphy.

With a vintage façade that draws the eye and its aesthetically pleasing home goods section, Ace of Troy seems to make the most of its college town location and attracts more than just the typical customers focused on home improvement needs.

As you move further into the store, shelves blend into hardware necessities perhaps more commonly associated with Ace Hardware. Whether you’re looking for paint for your porch, a ceramic skull for your desk, or a fun place to wander around Ace of Troy might just be the place to go.

Market Block Books

Book lovers at Hudson Valley should consider taking a trip to Market Block Books, when next in the market for something great to read.
Located conveniently at 290 River St., directly across from the River and Front Street bus stop.

Market Block Books is another independently owned store that seems to offer something for everyone. Local authors, poetry and short stories, science, healthy living, and music each have their own shelves, and there’s a decent section devoted to children.

The store itself is a thing of beauty too, reminiscent of old school book stores that are few and far between these days. There are old leather chairs next to the big window to invite readers to sit with their prospective next read, a baby-grand piano is used to display books in one corner, and the fiction section has a ladder that goes up to the ceiling (although customers are discouraged from using it.)

With so few independent bookstores left, it’s refreshing to set foot in a place like Market Block Books and experience a genuinely warm and inviting environment. The selection is also quite varied, and there’s something for anyone looking for their next read.

Whistling Kettle

Good coffee shops seem to get a lot of attention in pieces like this, but what about something for those of us looking for a truly good cup of tea?

The Whistling Kettle, a contemporary tea room located at 245 Broadway in downtown Troy, is completely worth a trip into town.

The tea room offers an extensive, at times overwhelming “tea bar” where customers can smell all of the teas available to be served on site or bought and enjoyed at home. There’s also an array of tea pots, kettles, and infusers for sale carefully displayed on a long shelf.

Customers can also sit and enjoy food with their tea, including panini, crepes, and soups. The menu at Whistling Kettle tends to be a little pricier than the average college student may be comfortable paying, but the warm, modern and slightly upscale atmosphere would make a fantastic date spot or a good place to meet parents or friends to catch up.

Tea to go is also always a good option, and for those who prefer tea or coffee, Whistling Kettle is the place to know. Generously sized to-go cups go for about $4.50.

PHOTO BY Grace Sgambettera

PHOTO BY Grace Sgambettera

PHOTO BY Grace Sgambettera

PHOTO BY Grace Sgambettera

PHOTO BY Grace Sgambettera

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